Ali Kamil GÜZEL[*]
The world is changing rapidly. As technology has developed, the distances between people have been decreasing with each passing day. For instance, it was taking days to travel between countries, but now it is just 3 hours to go to Berlin –capital of Germany from Ankara- capital of Turkey. Technologically developed devices such as mobile phones, computers, planes, cars, trains, ships are bringing people closer to each other; in other words, they make the world ‘smaller.’ This concept is known as globalization. It can be clearly seen from the ideas given above that the technology is the most important reason for the globalization. Globalization has negative and positive effects on the people who are living in this world. As the most users of technology, young people are being more affected by globalization of the world than adults.
In this article, I will argue that the process of globalization, and the consequences of this process has influences on young generations while they are defining their own cultural identities. Secondly, globalization of the world has caused a situation which is called as emerging adulthood. Finally, one of the most significant effects of globalization on young people is its reflection on communication between individuals and their families, friends, other people in the surrounding. In this paper, pros and cons of globalization on young people will be examined (Said, 1979).
To begin with, globalization has many effects on culture, and it changes young people’s understanding of it. Culture is the set of rules that regulates interaction between individuals and their daily life habits. After its emergence, globalization has started to mix cultures from all around the world and create its own culture. Mostly individuals are being exposed external world in their adolescence period. Nowadays, in this period, young people are having more time with technological devices than their families. In the past, youngsters were intimated by the communities’ own values, and they were growing up in this atmosphere. However, as a consequence of globalization of the world, younger people found themselves within the middle of a cultural conflict between their own cultures and ‘the culture’ which was created by globalization. While they are constructing their character, they do not feel that they belong to the mother culture anymore, and do not respect its values. They want to live a life which is injected with advertisements, social media and internet. They are defining themselves as ‘citizens of the global world’, but they are becoming ‘slaves of the popular culture’ in a manner of speaking. Therefore, the world is going to the point of no return. When young people become adults, the varieties and cultural disparity of this world, which makes the world a better place to live, will be vanishing.
Another effect of globalization is the impacts on young people’s transformation from adolescence to adulthood. The 21st century in the global world is called as the Information Age. It requires people to get better education. In the past, getting an undergraduate level without any extra education was sufficient for a people who want to find a job easily and live a regular life with their families. However, in today’s world, people are obliged to get better; in other words, more education to continue their lives without economic concerns. Therefore, young people pursue education for longer periods, and they cannot easily pass into adult responsibilities such as marriage, parenthood, and work. The medium ages for these transitions are in the late twenties in every industrialized society and rising rapidly in developing countries (Arnett, 2000). This concept is known as emerging adulthood. Furthermore, globalization brings about emerging adulthood because it promotes economic development. This concept is more tangible in the countries which are more developed and globalized in economic sense, and where youngsters are not under pressure of economic concerns. It forces young people to find better opportunities of living, and results in delaying adulthood. Unlike this, in rural areas, young individuals are starting life in their early twenties. They are not allowed to postpone adulthood because of their families’ life standards.
Finally, globalization is affecting communication between youngsters and their families, friends, and other people in the surrounding. As technology has developed, a variety of new ways of communication have emerged. Nowadays, the communication between individuals is much easier than the past. Seen as the most frequent users of technology, young people are employing these ways to communicate with each other, family and the other people. Millennials are more familiar with technological devices, and they prefer living alone and socialize on the Internet (Akdeniz, 2018). However, the quality of this communication is a controversial topic. While the number of ways of communication increasing, the quality of communication is decreasing. Young people are being attached to mobile devices, computers, social media accounts and they do not care about anything else except for their followers on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media websites and online games or YouTube videos. Moreover, after the globalization, a huge gap occurred between generations. In the past, it was easier to a father to understand his son, but now it is almost impossible for a father to have a healthy communication without any heated discussion. Briefly, globalization have been affected young people negatively.
To conclude, globalization has effects on almost all members of this world community especially the individuals who are intimated with technology. As the most frequent users of technological devices, young people are being more affected from it than adults. It attracts youngsters and they dedicate themselves to have a life which is imposed them by the global culture. Younger generation seems to believe dressing from Adidas and Benetton, eating hamburger from McDonalds give them a cool life (Mahiroğlu, 2005). As a result of globalization, young individuals are in the middle of a cultural confusion. They cannot define their own cultural identity. Another consequence is it is causing a problem which called as emerging adulthood. Young people got stuck in somewhere between adolescence and adulthood. Thus, they cannot become adults while they are not adolescences. The third and the last effect of globalization on young people in this paper is it is influencing youngsters’ communication with their families, friends, and other people in the surrounding. Briefly stated, globalization has many effects on young individuals in the world, in other words future of this world. These effects should be considered, and action as taking social media under control immediately, protective policies on cultural values and trying to adapt cultural values to the global world must be taken to avoid bad results.
Ali Kamil Güzel
Arnett, J. J. (2000). Emerging Adulthood: A theory of development from the late teens through the twenties. American Psychologist, 55, 469–480.
Akdeniz, B. (2018). Kuşaklar Arasındaki Farklar. Doğu-Batı, 84, 128-129.
Mahiroğulları, A. (2005). Küreselleşmenin Kültürel Değerler Üzerindeki Etkisi. Sosyal Siyaset Konferansları, 54, 1275-1288.
[*] Ibni Haldun University, Faculty of Law